Deaths from crashes involving trucks have decreased by half in the past 35 years, in part due to trucker safety training, improved technology, and other factors. Interestingly, in 4 of every 5 head-on crashes involving a semi-truck and a car the car drivers were at fault, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation.
When the cause of the crash is due to negligence on the part of the trucker or the trucking company, both can potentially be held liable. Indeed, an experienced truck accident attorney will fully investigate all potential causes that contributed to the accident, such as:
- Poor or defective signage
- Improper safety maintenance
- Overloading a truck unlawfully
- Drivers who do not follow codes and regulations
- Truck companies who do not train, supervise, or hire truckers according to federal and state truck regulations
Can the Truck Company Be Held Liable for a Trucker’s Negligence?
The trucking company can potentially be held liable for a truck driver’s negligence based on a legal concept called “respondeat superior.” This is if the trucker is employed by the company. However, some trucking companies will hire a truck driver as an independent contractor, and thus not an employee. In cases like these, one must investigate how much the truck company in question supervised the alleged contractor and if indeed it is possible to then sue the trucking company.
In situations where the trucker is designated as a contractor and the company is not at fault, it is possible to sue the trucker. In some situations, the injured person may be able to seek damages and file a claim against any negligent parties, if they were indeed negligent and caused the crash, including the trucker, the freight owner, the driver of the truck, the employer of the truck driver, the owner of the truck company, the truck manufacturer, the designer of certain parts of the truck if they were defective, the maintenance company of the truck and so on.
It is useful to recognize that not all truck accidents are caused by driver negligence. For instance, when an 18-wheeler jackknifes, it could be due to poor road conditions such as ice or as a result of a sudden turn the trucker needed to take to avoid hitting a vehicle that had stalled on the road.
Personal Injury Attorney Media, PA: (610) 565-0240
If you were injured in an accident caused by another, you have rights to seek compensation that will help cover your costs for medical treatment, lost wages, lost material items, and other damages. The Law Offices of John E. Kusturiss, Jr., in Media, Pennsylvania, can help.
Here, you will find attorneys experienced in protecting the rights of the injured. To discuss your concerns in a free initial consultation that is confidential with an experienced personal injury attorney, please contact (610) 565-0240 or email us.
We represent clients in all types of personal injury cases. We also handle cases involving criminal defense and family law throughout Springfield, Chester, Upper Darby, Ridley Park, Newtown Square, and Havertown, PA.